With so many designer dog breeds that one comes across these days, it can often take work to keep up with all the names. However, one such breed that has become immensely popular in the last decade is the Shih Poo.
Shih Poos are fluffy and small dogs that have a very friendly personalities. As the name suggests, a Shih Tzu cross Poodle is a cross between a Shih Tzu and a Toy Poodle.
While a Shih Tzu is attentive and loyal, a Toy Poodle is super intelligent and enjoys having the spotlight on itself, resulting in the versatility of the Shih Poo. They serve as wonderful companions not just for families with kids but also for older adults.
Although Shih Tzus and Toy Poodles have been around for a long time, the Shih Tzu cross Poodle is a relatively newer breed, and it’s best to research before you bring this adorable animal home.
So, let’s dive into details about their personality, dietary needs, grooming requirements, and more.
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History and Facts of Shih Tzu X Poodle
A Shih Poo has been around for about three decades, with its parent breeds having quite a well-established history.
The background of Shih Tzus goes back to the royalty of China. Known as Shih-Tzu Kou in traditional Chinese, the lion-like features gave it the ‘lion dog’ tag, and the legend says that Buddha traveled with a Shih Tzu.
As per history, Shih Tzus existed even 2000 years ago and lived in the monasteries in Tibet. This breed received recognition from the American Kennel Club in 1969. They were trained in a way so that they could turn the prayer wheels.
The Toy Poodle was bred as a smaller version of the Standard Poodle during the 18th century. They were mainly trained as performers and mushroom hunters. Poodles are known as the national dogs of France, and they were developed as duck hunters in Germany.
|Height||8 to 15 inches|
|Weight||7 to 20 pounds|
|Lifespan||10 to 17 years|
|Coat colour||White, black, grey, brown, brindle, gold|
|Best suited for||Families with kids, senior citizens|
About Shih Tzu Cross Poodle
Bringing a Shih Poo into your family is like welcoming a small ball of tremendous energy. Whether in an apartment or a backyard, they love displaying their energy just about anywhere. They love to run around the house and have their owners playfully chase after them.
The Shih Poo is an adaptable breed, meaning they will be just as comfortable living in a small apartment as they would be in a home in the suburbs. The positive nature of these dogs keeps everyone around them happy and energised at all times.
One might think that a crossbreed always contains the exact blend of its parent breeds, but that isn’t the case. Since a Shih Poo is smaller than many other breeds, you might want to teach your children to handle them accordingly or bring them home only if you have older kids.
1. Physical Attributes of Shih Tzu Cross Poodle
Shih Poos are quite small, with a height of about 8 to 15 inches. The texture of their coats can vary, depending on which parent breed they take after. If they are more like a Shih Tzu, their coat will be straight, and if they take after a Poodle, they will have a curly coat.
A Shih Tzu cross Poodle has wide-set eyes and a round face, giving them an adorable look. Their coat colour has several variations, such as black, white, brown, grey, and brindle, with many possibilities of colour combinations.
2. Personality and Temperament of Shih Tzu Cross Poodle
Shih Poos contain the personality traits of their parent breeds, making them affectionate, playful, quick-witted, charming, and moderately intelligent dogs. They could also inherit a Shih Tzu’s stubbornness, and if you’re a first-time dog owner, you might want to be careful about this aspect.
These dogs are quite energetic and love to play. They get along pretty well with older children, but you must keep an eye on them when little children are around. A Shih Poo doesn’t always react well in the presence of other dogs.
These well-behaved dogs love pleasing their owners and receiving attention from them. Some of these dogs could experience separation anxiety if their owners leave them for long periods.
So, if all your family members are working individuals, you should consider keeping your dog at a daycare facility while you’re at work.
3. Grooming of Shih Tzu Cross Poodle
A Shih Poo’s coat grows quickly and is prone to matting, regardless of whether it’s straight or curly. Therefore, it’s vital that you brush your dog’s coat daily and take them to a professional groomer every month to maintain the health of its coat.
These breeds require sanitary trims on their bellies, in their armpits, and beneath their tails. Try to brush your dog’s teeth regularly. Get them habituated to it from a tender age, starting out by brushing a few times a week.
The Shih Tzu Poodle mix can often get reddish-brown tear stains beneath their eyes. Hence, it’s imperative that you wash your dog’s face every day and wipe it beneath its eyes carefully to prevent a stain from setting in.
Additionally, keep their ears dry and clean and trim their nails at least once every two weeks.
4. Diet and Nutrition of Shih Tzu Cross Poodle
In order to ensure that your Shih Poo maintains its lean weight and doesn’t develop weight-related health issues such as diabetes, it is crucial to feed it a balanced and healthy diet.
Since they love to eat, you should watch how much you serve them, so they don’t overeat. Feed them meals twice a day and ask your vet for further recommendations.
5. Training and Exercise of Shih Tzu Cross Poodle
When training a Shih Poo, one might experience slight difficulty because they tend to be stubborn initially. However, be patient and train them while they are still puppies so they eventually learn to obey you.
Make sure to treat them with rewards when they display good behaviour and use positive reinforcement methods. House training a Shih Poo is usually slow, and crate training is recommended instead.
Even though Shih Poos are small dogs, they like to be active and require exercise, much like other dogs. Therefore, taking them on 15-minute long walks once or twice a day is important to maintain their physical health.
6. Health Concerns of Shih Tzu Cross Poodle
A hybrid dog could inherit some of the health issues found in its parent breeds. The health problems to watch out for in a Shih Poo are brachycephalic airway syndrome, hip dysplasia, intervertebral disc disease, keratoconjunctivitis sicca, patellar luxation, sebaceous adenitis, Von Willebrand disease, and progressive retinal atrophy.
Your Shih Tzu can also be susceptible to dental issues, such as periodontal disease, tartar accumulation, and dental overcrowding, which is why it’s wise to pay close attention to their dental care.
If you’re looking for a furry, lovable, and loyal pet who will always accompany you, get a Shih Poo without any hesitation.
They are also known to be fabulous, emotional support animals who provide their owners with emotional stability and bucket-loads of affection.
A Shih Poo is quite a calm and peaceful creature, which is why senior citizens and those who live alone love to have them around.
However, before you decide to adopt one of these dogs for yourself, go through the details mentioned in the article to have all the information you need.
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